Didn't see that part. Every account I've read of this (two, to be exact) implied that the officer let the lady go.
Re: the OP —
While I fully support this officer's actions, I hope she is willing to face the full wrath of a disciplinary hearing. This ain't a normal person doing a decent thing, this is a sworn peace officer intentionally derelicting duty and then publicizing it.
The police officer did cite the woman with a misdemeanor, so this woman will have to face a judge or pay a fine, etc.
If you had read the subheading in the OP link, you would have seen brightly blue colored heading:
'Arresting her wasn't going to solve the problem with her children being hungry,' said Thomas, who instead gave her a misdemeanor citation and bought her $100 worth of groceries
As my mom would have said: "Snake, it would have bitten you."
Oh, well, when I was in college, it was expected that we read the title page, subtitle, and introduction to all books.
Some graduate students still did not understand this expectation. And some did not pass.
Didn't read the link posted here. Probably should have, I guess, but I'd seen a couple of other versions of this story passed around and didn't feel the need to read more of the same here. Plus I don't take the Daily Mail seriously.
Sorry but if I have no other option to feed my kids, you're damn straight I'm stealing food.
I would love to know the weight of all the food that is thrown away because it is "expired" or "bad" in a total year. How many half-eaten plates get thrown away on a daily basis?
Yet this woman and her family are starving. It is crazy.
Locally, if you're an adult and you get caught shoplifting, you get booked into the municipal jail even on the misdemeanor offenses. Bond is a flat $706 for every count. I can't count the number of times I've read police narratives involving stolen groceries (or beer).
I won't go so far as to say all of those folks are desperate, but a few of them I have known from street encounters and stealing is all they've ever known.
I wonder what happened to all the WIC and Food Stamps money?
I can't speak for Florida, but in Louisiana-Mississippi, the welfare reform of the 1990s required food stamp recipients/households to work so many hours a week, prove they're looking for work (the proof isn't too difficult), attend job training (it's hosted by the DHS office, and at the end they place you in a job) or prove why they can't work. If you let that lapse for too long, you're cut off, at least for a time.